There was definitely no sentimental goodbyes to the Telford Campsite, the area and facilities were fine, in fact they were better than fine, but the local sandfly population were a nuisance to say the least, gnawing at your skin until they get at that delicious red gold they love so much. Mmmmmmmmmmmmm gold.
The gold of the sun had us believing in our souls, that we had the power to know, that we were indestructible. We were on farmland, walking on farm roads, so nothing was going to convince us otherwise, not even Tony Hadley himself. Although, we did notice a lot of the livestock coughing and sneezing, that was slightly unnerving, even if whatever they had (if anything) wasn’t transferable to humans, spreading anything serious would cripple New Zealand’s agriculture.
But sure we had stranger things to worry about, there was a large black cloud of mooing beef coming straight for us. With a fence on each side of us there wasn’t much room for us to manoeuvre so we stood on top of a small mound and watched the weather dogs round the dark cumulus lumps into the next field. Quite a feat to witness to be honest, the dogs trained to such aural accuracy that if you farted the wrong way you might end up with a bovine hokey cokey.
After chatting to the whistling farmer for a bit we discovered that he played rugby in Cavan for a spell while living in Slane, a town not too far from my own, Dundalk. But we weren’t home yet, carrying on we ventured through fields of beetroot until we had our own version of a nervous hokey cokey with a field of bulls. There’s something unnerving about a field of massive bulls staring at you while you navigate a shaky stile into their paddock. Yes, we’ve meandered our way through bulls before, but these were massive, drooling and they’d no manners either. Staring at you relentlessly while not letting you pass, no matter how nicely you asked, which resulted in you edging round them tentatively like a fat person in a china shop.
Getting down to the road it was time to ring Dave in the Ohai Lodge to pick us up and bring us to stay the night. While myself and Dave were chatting and sorting out the details, I went to thank him and say “Cool, Cheers” but instead, possibly due to dehydration and tiredness I uttered “Coo-eers”. I heard it and I couldn’t stop myself, assuming Dave thought that I had called him not one, but multiple “queers” I chose not to correct myself and hope that he hadn’t noticed, but diligent Dave needed a bit of confirmation that I had insulted him, “Erm..Sorry?” he said solemnly, “Cheers Dave!” I chirped, thankfully restoring Daves friendly demeanor.
Dave picked us up and brought us back to the lodge. Sadly his mother in law had just passed and his wife wasn’t there, meaning we wouldn’t be able to get a meal at the lodge, but Dave offered to bring us to get fish and chips and a box of beers. An evening of grease and hops were on the cards, while rooting through the food drop we had sent through the week before. We conveniently finished the box of beer just in time to go to bed.